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Author Topic: Aug. 8th 1980 - \  (Read 1254 times)
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« on: September 05, 2019, 11:48:20 AM »

Stumbled across this newspaper article:


Beach Boys delight crowd at River Festival

https://www.newspapers.com/image/?clipping_id=13077332&fcfToken=eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJmcmVlLXZpZXctaWQiOjEzOTY0NTk1MywiaWF0IjoxNTY3NzA4NjIwLCJleHAiOjE1Njc3OTUwMjB9.dNNmWTmRRinii308sRWn8ytrKzQ6kbTNaCeg8xSjynw


This show happened on Aug. 7th 1980 (NB: Previously I said it happened on the 8th but that was the day the article appeared; thnks to HeyJude for pointing that out). The usual songs of the KTSA tour are featured, but this caught my eye:

"... followed up by a calypso song called 'Leaving this town'."


Now I can imagine them pulling out "Looking at tomorrow" in 1983 (they did), but this seems a little far stretched. They didn't play that song, did they? I think with "calypso" the author could talk about "Sunshine" but that song doesn't feature a lyric like "leaving this town". So, what did happen here?


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« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2019, 12:01:04 PM »



Maybe "Heroes & Villains"?

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« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2019, 12:05:19 PM »

Outside of "anything is possible", there's no way they did "Leaving This Town" in 1980.

The review seems to lay out the order of the show. It notes "California Girls" started the show, then notes this "calypso" song, and then notes that "two songs later" they did "School Days."

This lines up with the four-song sequence most 1980 shows had, which was:

California Girls
Sloop John B
Darlin'
School Days

It seems likely the writer for some reason is talking about "Sloop John B." It still doesn't make much sense, as Carl only sings part of the lead, the song isn't a "calypso" song, and there's no precise "leaving this town" lyric.

But the writer describes a "dour" expression on Carl when discussing this song, so I think they may be talking about Brian rather than Carl. And Brian did typically sing the opening of "Sloop John B." at that time. And I guess it has the "around Nassau town" line.

I've read a lot of contemporary reviews of shows, and they often mangled song titles and other details.

My best guess is the writer is mistaking Brian for Carl, hearing "around Nassau town" as "leaving this town", and, I guess, seems to think the arpeggio type guitar riff at the beginning of "Sloop" sounds like calypso? This all sounds far fetched, but frankly less far fetched than Carl singing "Leaving This Town" as a one-off in 1980.

In fact, I think this newspaper date is August 8th, and the show is actually from August 7th, which lines up with this entry at setlist.fm for the Mississippi River Festival:

https://www.setlist.fm/setlist/the-beach-boys/1980/southern-illinois-university-edwardsville-edwardsville-il-3dc89b3.html

This setlist shows the standard 1980 setlist. So I think the writer was hearing "Sloop." Weird, though.  
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« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2019, 12:28:24 PM »

@HeyJude: Great work! I never would have thought about the "Nassau"-line in Sloop John B. But your theory makes a lot of sense! Only thing is that the author kinda sounds like he knows a bit about the band and wouldn't mess up such a well known song.
STE's idea is also good but H&V was done later in the set and the article indeed seems to go by order of the concert.
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« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2019, 12:42:39 PM »

Yeah, any scenario is weird. A writer with a seemingly decent baseline knowledge of the band messing that detail up that badly is pretty odd.

But yeah, Carl whipping out a 1973 "Holland" rarity, originally sung by Blondie, at one random concert on the 1980 tour at the Mississippi River Festival, seems exponentially less likely. I love the 1980 tour shows more than most, but other than doing "KTSA" material and, I guess, random one-offs like "Merry Minuet", the 1980 tour setlist was not particularly adventurous. Indeed, while the 1980 tour was generally performed solidly, it seemed to contribute to the ennui that Carl felt that led to his temporary departure in 1981.

I'm trying to remember all the mangled song titles and other details I've seen in reviews over the years. Some common cases would be calling it "I Wanna Go Home" instead of "Sloop...", and even just in the last few years Al's performance at a Brian show of "California Saga" was mistaken for "Cool Cool Water."
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« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2019, 02:38:32 AM »

Some common cases would be calling it "I Wanna Go Home" instead of "Sloop...",


To whomever's defense though, we have to mention, that "I wanna go home" is one of many titles undr which this folk song is known. Yet the Beach Boys' version of course was always called "Sloop John B.".
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« Reply #6 on: September 06, 2019, 10:22:22 PM »

Now I’m tempted to see how a calypso version of Leaving This Town would sound...
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« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2019, 12:52:32 PM »

I was at this show and I can confirm that LEAVING THIS TOWN was not played.  Neither was SANTA ANA WINDS; the only time I heard that live was in Louisville, KY on August 10.  In addition, YOU ARE SO BEAUTIFUL was not played as Dennis was not at the show.  One song they did play that is not listed on the set list link was LONG TALL TEXAN. As I recall, it was a by the numbers concert, 90 minutes, no more.  The weather was cool and the sky was cloudy, which seemed to fit the tone of the album cover and the mood on stage.  I'd seen them the previous summer, during the LA Light Tour... same deal. No nonsense,  90 minutes.  

As we drove back to Carbondale, IL, I remember thinking that it in no way compared to the first time I'd seen them at the Mississippi River Festival in August of 1977.  That show ran two hours with an intermission, Dennis in excellent form, Brian the most animated I've ever seen him doing vocal riffs on every song, introing every song and getting the crowd riled up (along with Dennis).  A full compliment of album cuts from LOVE YOU, a brand new preview of LADY LYNDA (Dennis introed - "This is one of Alan's songs - which is why I'm not on it!")  That got a laugh, as he then enthusiastically turned the stage over to Alan.  And  back to back FEEL FLOWS and ALL THIS IS THAT.

But August 1980 was a band fulfilling a contract.  Good, tight and professional, but nobody seemed to be having much fun.  
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« Reply #8 on: September 12, 2019, 01:11:05 PM »

Thanks for sharing your memories!



a brand new preview of LADY LYNDA (Dennis introed - "This is one of Alan's songs - which is why I'm not on it!")  That got a laugh, as he then enthusiastically turned the stage over to Alan.  


I read on wikipedia that Dennis was an uncredited co-arranger for the strings on "Lady Lynda". First time I ever heard that. Is there any truth to that?
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« Reply #9 on: September 12, 2019, 02:19:54 PM »

I read on wikipedia that Dennis was an uncredited co-arranger for the strings on "Lady Lynda". First time I ever heard that. Is there any truth to that?

Al mentioned in an interview that Dennis "helped" him "with the track." What exactly that constitutes wasn't made clear. I don't know if it would rise to the level of co-arranger.

From Al's 2000 Goldmine interview:

How did you come up with the idea for the classical-sounding introduction to "Lady Lynda"?

A friend of mine, Ron Altbach, he and I decided to write something together. I was familiar with his love of classical music. I was at the Johann Sebastian Bach festival up here in Carmel which happens every summer up here. I heard that beautiful piece sung at the Mission Cathedral here in Carmel. Gorgeous piece. It's called "Jesu Joy Of Man's Desiring." It was written for the church. When I heard that movement I went, "My God, that's too heavy! Maybe I can start the song with this thing." [laughs] Ron is such a great player that it just worked. We had to hire a classical guy to play an absolutely beautiful harpsichord that was brought in just for the occasion. It was a monster session with a 26-string orchestra, the harpsichord. Harry Betts arranged the strings. I can't remember if Dennis played the drums. Dennis helped me with the track. We played it live at a couple of places before we recorded it. I think he played drums. I did that 12-string guitar. It was a beautiful 12-string guitar that I still have. It would have worked better if it had been on my own album, but it certainly worked. We always seemed to be five people making five different albums on the same album.


I'm curious if C-Man or anybody else can chime in on who played drums on the final released version of the song. It's worth noting that even when Dennis was on tour, Bobby Figueroa usually drummed on the song (and, if I'm recalling correctly, Kowalski on the 1978 Australia dates). 
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« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2019, 06:37:41 PM »

I read on wikipedia that Dennis was an uncredited co-arranger for the strings on "Lady Lynda". First time I ever heard that. Is there any truth to that?

Al mentioned in an interview that Dennis "helped" him "with the track." What exactly that constitutes wasn't made clear. I don't know if it would rise to the level of co-arranger.

From Al's 2000 Goldmine interview:

How did you come up with the idea for the classical-sounding introduction to "Lady Lynda"?

A friend of mine, Ron Altbach, he and I decided to write something together. I was familiar with his love of classical music. I was at the Johann Sebastian Bach festival up here in Carmel which happens every summer up here. I heard that beautiful piece sung at the Mission Cathedral here in Carmel. Gorgeous piece. It's called "Jesu Joy Of Man's Desiring." It was written for the church. When I heard that movement I went, "My God, that's too heavy! Maybe I can start the song with this thing." [laughs] Ron is such a great player that it just worked. We had to hire a classical guy to play an absolutely beautiful harpsichord that was brought in just for the occasion. It was a monster session with a 26-string orchestra, the harpsichord. Harry Betts arranged the strings. I can't remember if Dennis played the drums. Dennis helped me with the track. We played it live at a couple of places before we recorded it. I think he played drums. I did that 12-string guitar. It was a beautiful 12-string guitar that I still have. It would have worked better if it had been on my own album, but it certainly worked. We always seemed to be five people making five different albums on the same album.


I'm curious if C-Man or anybody else can chime in on who played drums on the final released version of the song. It's worth noting that even when Dennis was on tour, Bobby Figueroa usually drummed on the song (and, if I'm recalling correctly, Kowalski on the 1978 Australia dates). 

C-man has credited Bobby Figueroa with the drums on th master. It is among one of the many credits I have been adding to Wikipedia to correct and expand it. Going on the LA wiki page gives this reference:

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,21772.25.html
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« Reply #11 on: September 12, 2019, 07:28:23 PM »

I found this, but can not confirm.

‘Dennis Wilson made an uncredited contribution to the song's lush string arrangement.’

https://m.facebook.com/184368661694967/posts/the-song-lady-lynda-was-written-by-alan-jardine-and-ron-altbach-for-the-beach-bo/351280101670488/

Also this from Ron at about the 3.30 mark. Includes Al in the Brother studio recording the lead.

https://youtu.be/-SVB-EvYtNw
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« Reply #12 on: September 12, 2019, 11:58:09 PM »

This from Jon Stebbins:
"Al has stated that Dennis was the guy who helped him get the arrangement together on Lady Lynda when he was recording it...Dennis' help was crucial to that arrangement and the vocal harmonies is what he said."

In another interview, Al mentioned how Dennis brought in the harpsichord player...which was Sterling Smith, whose band The Load Dennis had taken under his wing and used on some Bambu tracks, plus Sterling toured with the BBs for a time, of course (early '78-early '79).
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« Reply #13 on: September 13, 2019, 09:56:54 AM »

Interesting! Thanks, guys! Who would've thought of Dennis and Al working together on a song during this time....
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a diseased bunch of mo'fos if there ever was one… their beauty is so awesome that listening to them at their best is like being in some vast dream cathedral decorated with a thousand gleaming American pop culture icons.

- Lester Bangs on The Beach Boys


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To sum it up, they blew it, they blew it consistently, they continue to blow it, it is tragic and this pathological problem caused The Beach Boys' greatest music to be so underrated by the general public.

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« Reply #14 on: September 13, 2019, 01:43:22 PM »

Interesting! Thanks, guys! Who would've thought of Dennis and Al working together on a song during this time....

Agreed, that is pretty cool.

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